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Readiness of institutional setting to address the competitive technology challenges of SME sector in Sri Lanka: Perceptions of officers in local settings

Authors:

J.M.H.M. Upulwehera,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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S.K.N. Gamage ,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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P.S.K. Rajapakshe,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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J.M.S.B. Jayasundara,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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E.M.S. Ekanayake,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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G.A.K.N.J. Abeyrathne,

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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R.I.P.R. Prasanna

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, LK
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Abstract

In the era of economic globalization, many challenges arose for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) due to the rapidly intensified competition. In that, many of them cease within the few years of their commencement. Technology challenges are recognized as one of the main challenges retarding growth and reducing their potential contribution to the national economy. Therefore, SMEs must adopt survival strategies and strategic methods to survive to face various technological challenges. Hence, this research aims to address the apparent lack of research on the relative perception of DS-level officers on institutional support towards SMEs in facing technology challenges. The investigation used a qualitative, case study-based methodology. A series of key informant interviews were held using purposive sampling with 13 DS-level officers in the Agribusiness sector in Sri Lanka. Data gathered from the interviews were analysed using an in-depth thematic area analysis to identify five technology challenges: innovation-utilization of new scientific discoveries, business collaboration through networking, information communication technology, technology transfer with large-scale companies, and productivity-enhancing technologies. The findings of the study sorely revealed the association between SMEs’ technology challenges and the prevalence of numerous institutional defects. Finally, the study provides recommendations to develop existing institutional support concerning the agribusiness sector development in Sri Lanka. The study will help the government and related policymakers shape SMEs’ competitive strategies and policy adjusting and reforming processes.

How to Cite: Upulwehera, J. M. H. M., Gamage, S. K. N., Rajapakshe, P. S. K., Jayasundara, J. M. S. B., Ekanayake, E. M. S., Abeyrathne, G. A. K. N. J., & Prasanna, R. I. P. R. (2021). Readiness of institutional setting to address the competitive technology challenges of SME sector in Sri Lanka: Perceptions of officers in local settings. Journal of Management Matters, 8(2), 51–74. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jmm.v8i2.27
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Published on 31 Dec 2021.
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